Old 09-28-2018, 10:25 AM   #1
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Default Backing up a project to flash drive

Hi. I've was hoping someone might give me a clue on the path to send or backup a project to flash drive. I also have 2nd hard drive in my desktop. I'd feel good eventually about using both but, would like to start with the flash drive.

I just started into using Reaper a few months ago and am well into my first project with tons of items with tons of automation. Would really hate to lose it.


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Old 09-28-2018, 10:40 AM   #2
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click the project menu, save as...now check the little boxes at the bottom that says 'copy media to project directory' and 'create subdirectory.'

this process won't cover any plugins that use file references (samplers, impulse reverbs, soundfont players etc), so open the project on a different computer to test. the best way to future proof a project is to render stems for all your tracks, since 10 years from now your plugins may become obsolete and unusable.
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Old 09-28-2018, 02:58 PM   #3
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To add to the above. I would also render your stems WITHOUT any plugins at all as a separate pass. This way, maybe in 10 years time you might want to remix the whole lot again with a whole heap of different plugins etc …

Of course, only if you feel you might wish to re-visit tracks again years down the road. We do see posts here quite often about people who only have a stereo track, or stems with reverb on which they want to remove! And they are pretty stuck when they want to create a new/better mixdown.


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Old 09-28-2018, 03:18 PM   #4
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While these suggestions are all good ones there is no substitute for a real backup program in case of computer failure. EaseUS is fairly inexpensive and can create images which can be UNIVERSALLY restored to DIFFERENT computers later. By doing a complete UNIVERSAL image backup of your drive or drives in this manner you can be assured that you have a good chance of recovering all of your data down the road should the need arise. Bear in mind that many backup programs do not have this feature. They only work when restoring a hard drive to the same computer. But remember that if your computer dies and you want to restore your Daw properly you're going to need a UNIVERSAL backup.

There are generally two kinds of backups, image and file. An image backup creates an image of the complete drive. A file backup saves files based on directory structure. To make sure that you get everything it's best to have at least one image backup. In addition to being able to reimage a new computer or failed hard drive a good backup program will allow you to "mount" the image to a virtual drive and pull files from it directly.

To make sure that your project will be completely readable on another system you need to backup the operating system as well as your reaper data. This is because many of your plug-ins store information in the Windows registry. So backing up a project file to a thumb drive may or may not allow you to open it completely later unless you remove all of the plug-ins.

Rendering stem and/or dry mixes is also a good idea. This allows you to move your project to a different DAW down the road. In this case you would have to remix from scratch but at least you would have your performance data.

Although Windows has a built-in backup feature I would not rely on it except as a secondary failsafe. The Windows imaging backup is notoriously unreliable and generally cannot be restored to a different machine or even the same machine that has slightly different hardware, such as different drives, upgraded video card, etc.

Another common mistake people make regarding backups is making only one. If it is truly something you cannot afford to lose two or three at least one of which is using a different method is best.

One final note, backups are only as good as your ability to restore them. Over the years I've seen many people make backups but never truly validate them. That is to say they never try to do a restore until they have to. This is a mistake. It can be difficult and a pain in the ass but if you have information you know must be preserved the only way to know that it actually is is to go all the way through the process and test before an actual need arises.

Okay I'm done with my "you should always backup" rant.

PS: One note about universal backups: Microsoft is trying to force everyone to Windows 10. They are making deals with computer chip manufacturers to try and force this issue by getting the chipmakers to manufacture chipsets that will not allow earlier operating systems to be installed (no drivers). So theoretically if you backup a Windows 7 system today and need to restore something years down the road you may be up a creek in that you would have to find an older system to restore to. So if it's really something you can't afford to lose you might consider keeping an old spare box around somewhere just for this scenario.

Last edited by Steviebone; 09-28-2018 at 08:11 PM.
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Old 09-28-2018, 05:54 PM   #5
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add me to the rant
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Old 11-20-2018, 09:42 AM   #6
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Default Restoration

Thank you for all your relevant feedback. Very good education and inspiration in this thread. I could avoid suicidal thoughts even if I only was to save the performance data without any plugins, or anything else. Re-mixing has always appeared much more feasible than, "re-performing" so, having all of these saved and backup forms would each be very valuable in there own way, some being of greater implementation than others.

This is good.

Thank you again.

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Old 01-22-2019, 12:23 PM   #7
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Here's what I do to back up any given set of data:

Location 1 (on-site):
- 1 HDD Backup
- 1 Optical Disc Backup
- 1 Flash Drive Backup

Location 2 (off-site):
- 1 HDD Backup
- 1 Optical Disc Backup
- 1 Flash Drive Backup

I also have incremental backups on additional on-site flash drives. If you don't have off-site backups, you're putting your data at great risk in the event of a disaster, such as a fire, flood, theft, etc.
Please check out these MIDI requests: http://forum.cockos.com/showthread.php?t=103192
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